US Open: 'Anybody can win this tournament' – Swiatek advances to first Flushing Meadows quarter-final

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After defeating Julie Niemeier in a less than inspiring showing, Iga Swiatek feels the race for the US Open title is wide open, and any of the women remaining in the quarter-finals can go all the way

In an uncharacteristic opening set from the world number one, Swiatek had her serve broken in the very first game, and conceded another break to drop the frame 6-2.

She fought back in the second as they traded breaks of serve, with only three successful holds from 10 games as Swiatek took it 6-4, before really finding her groove in the third to run away with a 6-0 finish.

It was her 19th 'bagel' set of the season, with only Serena Williams in 2013 (25) posting more 6-0 sets in a single year since 2000.

When asked about that record, Swiatek said she is aware of it, and that she enjoys Twitter memes referring to "Iga Swiatek's Bakery", although she did not wish to discuss any potential records.

Instead, she discussed the work she has been putting in on the hard courts, having never made the US Open quarter-final before this run.

"For sure, hard court is our goal at the beginning of the season, not the end of the season," she said. "Also we're mainly practicing on hard court pre-season.

"These are the courts that basically are going to show me where my level of tennis is.

"I played too many matches this year to get, like, huge excitement honestly. But for sure today I'm the most excited because the quarter-final is my best result right now.

"I'm just happy that I did a better job than last year and I'm going to push forward."

Swiatek was complimentary about her next opponent, Jessica Pegula, admitting "she has a game style that suits these courts", but she pointed out how many emerging players are on the tour at the moment and how it may simply come down to who can handle the big moments.

"I guess it's going to show who's going to cope with being in a new situation better," she said.

"But I think it's just exciting for all of us. It also shows that anything can happen, and anybody can win this tournament."